The South African National Editors' Forum (Sanef) has welcomed Black First Land First's (BLF) compliance with the South Gauteng High Court's order that they denounce violence against journalists through a statement on their websites and social media platforms.
BLF said at a press briefing in Johannesburg on Sunday that it fully complied with a court order relating to the intimidation and harassment of journalists.
Sanef gave BLF until 10:00 on Sunday to send out a revised statement after it said it had failed to comply with the court order in at least two aspects.
This comes after Sanef and 11 other journalists, commentators and editors approached the High Court in Johannesburg for an urgent interdict against BLF members, to stop them from harassing, intimidating, assaulting and threatening the applicants.
On Friday, Judge Corrie van der Westhuizen ruled that BLF and their leader Andile Mngxitama were interdicted from intimidating and assaulting journalists and going to their homes.
They had to abide by the order within 12 hours. BLF issued a statement on July 11 that in agreement with the court order, it does not condone the intimidation, harassment, assault on and threats made to any journalists by BLF members.
It also did not condone going to the homes of or acting in any manner that would constitute an infringement of the personal liberty of any journalist by members of BLF.
Additionally, this included the conduct on social media directed at any journalist that is threatening, such as intimidating gestures on social media or anything that references violence, harm and threats.
During an illegal protest at the home of Tiso Blackstar editor-at-large Peter Bruce on June 29, Bruce was intimidated and Business Day editor Tim Cohen was also allegedly assaulted.
According to Sanef, BLF has also threatened HuffPost editor-at-large Ferial Haffajee and Talk Radio 702 presenter Eusebius McKaiser, referring to them as 'askaris', a term that was used during the apartheid era to refer to liberation fighters who changed sides and joined the oppressive regime.
Other co-applicants were amaBhungane partner Sam Sole, News24 Editor-in-Chief Adriaan Basson, EWN and Talk Radio 702's Stephen Grootes, Independent journalist Max du Preez, EWN editor Katy Katopodis and EWN reporter Barry Bateman.
Additional Reporting -- News24